Stocks don't take personality tests. They don't have MySpace pages to gauge their friendly attraction. They don't keep slam books. They don't split "Best Friends" lockets in half.
If someone were to ask you about the stocks that we love the most in the U.S., how would you answer that? Trading volume? Number of shareholders of record? Lowest short interest ratio?
They are all flawed metrics in this regard. They fancy bulk over emotion. They side with temporary speculation over permanent passion.
I have a better measuring stick. When I want to weigh our collective amorous weight in specific equities, I like to go to the list of the most popular orders at OneShare.com. The site specializes in selling single-share stock certificates as gifts. When you're willing to pay the transfer fee for a single stock, and sometimes even frame it with a personalized plaque, well, that's love, my friend.
How do I love thee? Let me count the odd-lot ways
When my oldest son was born, we decided to decorate his playroom with a circus theme. No clowns -- they're just creepy. We just wanted to duplicate the jovial nature of a day at the carnival. As a stock lover, my contribution to the decor was a single share of Circus Circus stock. It proved to be a nice conversation piece. And, yes, it appreciated nearly threefold on the way to its eventual buyout.
That's why I can certainly vouch for the notion that a single-share investor's commitment is just as strong -- if not more so -- than the investor laying it on the line in larger sums on the same company.
Let's take a look at the five most popular stocks, according to OneShare:
5. DreamWorks Animation
All you need is love
There's plenty of love in those five American institutions. I'll admit that some of the findings surprised me. I figured that Apple Computer
You know what didn't surprise me? Two of the five stocks on the list -- Pixar and DreamWorks Animation -- have been recommended to Motley Fool Stock Advisor newsletter service subscribers.
David and Tom Gardner have been presenting their best stock ideas side by side for years now, and it's only natural that the two stock-picking masters should happen to single out the companies that we collectively wind up loving -- or owning.
The premium research service's aim is pretty simple: To build lasting wealth for you and your family by helping you find deeply undervalued stocks.
David and Tom aren't just coming back with low-P/E stocks on a trailing basis. That would be a silly scale to quantify "deeply undervalued stocks." Instead, they pick companies poised for greatness; in retrospect, they'll look like huge bargains at the time of their initial recommendation.
Does that sound like a winning strategy? You bet. The average Stock Advisor pick has appreciated by 61.8%, several times better than the 21.1% average return generated by the market in that time. If you want to associate yourself with that kind of quest for superior investing ideas, you may want to consider subscribing for a year or two. If you're still not sure, why don't you give it a shot for the next four weeks -- at no cost -- with a free trial subscription.
It's what falling in love with stocks -- and investing -- is all about.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz can be a lovebird when it comes to certain stocks. He happens to own shares of Pixar and Disney. T he Fool has a disclosure policy. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.